NESCAC Quarterfinals: Williams Ephs defeat Wesleyan Cardinals 3-1

NESCAC Quarterfinals: Williams Ephs defeat Wesleyan Cardinals 3-1

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA — The Williams women's soccer team (11-2-2) defeated the Wesleyan University Cardinals (2-7-6) today 3-1 in a NESCAC Quarterfinal contest.

During the first half, Williams Senior Carla Nicasio and Eph Sophomore Crystal Lewin both scored a goal each. In the second half of the match, Wesleyan Sophomore Isabel Clements and Williams Freshman Kristi Kirshe both scored for their respective teams.

The first goal of the game was scored by Williams' back Nicasio at 1:46. Nicasio fired a shot from near the left sideline with her left foot that went over Wesleyan goalie Jessica Tollman's leap and into the upper right side of the goal.  

Just over two minutes later (3:56) Williams extended their lead to 2-0 on a goal by by Eph sophomore Crystal Lewin. Lewin collected a blocked shot in the box and beat Tollman with a shot into the lower right corner from close range. Neither of the Eph goals had assists.

 Williams Women's Soccer Coach Michelyne Pinard comments that "We knew we needed to start stronger and that was our goal. This way we could keep them on their heels and let them realize that in order to play they needed to attack and get forward so that there would be space behind them that we would be able to get into." 

The Wesleyan Cardinals also had many opportunities at the goal. They made a total of 4 shots and were able to push their way into the box multiple times during the first forty five minutes.

During the first half, the Williams Ephs outshot the Wesleyan Cardinals 5-4. Williams' goalkeeper Hannah Van Wetter and Wesleyan goalkeeper Jessica Tollman both made one save each. Williams had 4 fouls, while Wesleyan only had 3. Wesleyan had one offside, but there were no offside offenses for Williams. There were no corner kicks for either team.  

After coming out of the first half down two, the Cardinals stepped up their game during the second half. They were able to make many more shots and play most of their game in the attacking third of the field. But it was not until thirty minutes into the second half that they managed to make their first goal.

During the 75th minute (74:02) the Cardinals netted their first goal with sophomore Isabel Clements scoring in a scrum in front of the goal. Clements was able to get the Wesleyan University Cardinals onto the scoreboard.  

About ten minutes later, Eph Audrey Thomas took a foul kick, which was then deflected by a Cardinal defender. Katie Wardlaw then obtained possession of the ball and shot, but her attempt at the goal was thwarted by the goalkeeper's block. The ball then went to Kristi Kirshe who scored the game's final goal for the Ephs at 87:45.

A yellow card was also given out to Wesleyan's Kerry Doyle for a reckless foul.

This occurred during the second half of the game.

During the last half of the match, Williams had a total shot count of 17, while Wesleyan had 11 shots. Williams Van Wetter made a total of 4 saves today, as did Cardinal's Tollman. Both teams also had 3 corner kicks and 8 fouls and 1 offside offense this match.  

Williams advances to the NESCAC semifinals to be hosted by top seed Middlebury next weekend.